Rather than circle the plaza between agency buildings (which is right outside my work building) multiple time per usual, I decided to hike down to the bike trail on the water front.
I am so glad I did.
It was a nice change of scenery. I’ve been walking that plaza for years and as my walking buddies have dropped off one by one, I am over the endless circling. Instead of rushing and worrying about keeping a proper pace to keep my heartbeat up, I took my time, taking in the scenery of the architecture and passersby as I walked through downtown Albany, across the footbridge and onto the water front.
“When my pace is hurried and I’m feeling weak and worried and I need a little respite for my soul”
Once off the bridge, I was immediately hit by a cool breeze coming off the river and the vision and sound of tree leaves swaying against the backdrop of the Hudson. The sun was glistening on the tips of the water crests left in the wake of motor boaters and kayakers.
“I find a place in time to leave this troubled world behind some time to sit with myself and be still.”
I passed a gaggle of geese feeding on the remnants of a previous visitor’s lunch, the sound of their light honking bringing a grin to my face as they looked anxiously to see if I had brought an addition to their feast.
“I need a little respite for my soul, soul, soul take a little time to leave my cares behind,”
I passed not one, not two but three very attractive men, all polite enough to give a smile and nod as we passed, something practically unheard of on the streets of Albany.
“find a little comfort and some peace of mind,”
There are a multitude of trees and picnic tables, benches and grassy spots along the trail, so when I would start to get a little too warm and sweaty, I’d stop for a moment and cool down.
“some time to sit with myself and be still.”
My heart thumped as I passed under the railroad track just in time to watch, feel and hear a train chug by overhead. I can’t remember the last time I was that close to a moving train. It was exhilarating.
I continued to walk along the path and let my mind wander.
To be honest, when your thoughts have been as troubled as mine have been lately, the idea of being alone with them can be a bit off putting, but I know avoiding them won’t make them go away, so I let them flow as I soaked in the sun and the laughter and conversations of the lunchers and other walkers.
“I wait to be enlightened and I find that I am frightened and I need a little respite for my soul”.
Even though many of these thoughts have been running through my head like a broken record for the past few weeks, tiring me out and making a me weary, I find I am starting to come to terms with what is, bit by bit, and am beginning to think I may be my old self again some day, something I wasn’t so sure about too long ago. And for all the things I have lost or that have changed, for all the hurt and confusion I have endured lately, I realize my life is ripe with good things and good people and all I have to do is let myself be aware of that to benefit from it.
“I’ll find my life’s a blessing if I learn this simple lesson learn to sit with myself and be still.”
Day by day, and especially today, the healing continues and the spring has ever so slightly started to return to my step. I still have moments…a song, a word, an image or stray thought that heavies my heart, causes my eyes to water or reminds me the pain hasn’t fully subsided yet, that I still have a way to go, but time has helped
“I found the gift of knowing in a quiet place is growing and I need a little respite for my soul.”
As I struggle to find a balance between what I have and what I want, what I believe and what is true, what to hold onto and what to let go of and who I am and how I fit into the world and the lives of the people I interact with, I have to remember that I am and always will be a work in progress and I should worry less about what others think and feel about me and more about what I think and feel about myself.
“My faults I am forgiven in the moment I am living as I sit with myself to be still”.
Finally, I need to worry less about what I get back and more about what I have to give. Just because you don’t bear fruit every time doesn’t mean you stop planting seeds.
Oddly enough, this was the way I was going to end my post when I got an e-mail from a good friend with the following sentiment:
“It’s not what you gather, but what you scatter that tells what kind of life you have lived.”
“Two roads diverged in a wood
And I took the one less traveled by
And that has made all the difference”
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